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Chocolate Ale - Boulevard Brewing Co.

Chocolate AleChocolate Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
84
good

617 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 617
Reviews: 232
rAvg: 3.73
pDev: 17.16%


Brewed by:
Boulevard Brewing Co. visit their website
Missouri, United States

Style | ABV
American Strong Ale |  9.10% ABV

Availability: Spring

Notes/Commercial Description:
One of the brightest stars in a city filled with culinary treasures, Christopher Elbow has been handcrafting masterpieces in chocolate for more than ten years. In that time the reputation of his artistic delicacies has spread around the globe. Elbow’s sweets are distinguished by their use of unusual and sometimes surprising flavors and ingredients; in that adventurous spirit we joined forces to bring you a very special Chocolate Ale.

In developing this beer, Elbow and Boulevard brewmaster Steven Pauwels sought to harmonize the interplay of chocolate and malt, with each supporting and enhancing, but not overwhelming, the other. Just the right chocolate was essential. Elbow recommended a rare variety from the Dominican Republic, prized for its robust flavor and aroma, and a personal favorite. More than a mere flavoring, the chocolate — in the form of nibs, or crushed, roasted beans – was incorporated into the brewing process itself.

24 IBU

(Beer added by: HOPPYKC on 02-09-2011)
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Ratings: 617 | Reviews: 232 | Show All Ratings:
Reviews by tito42:
Photo of tito42
tito42

Missouri

3.95/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 750ml corked bottle into a Boulevard Smokestack Series tulip. Limited Valentine's Day run (recently announced to be produced again in 2012).

A: Rich amber with ruby hues, foamy tan head, nice lacing. Unfiltered particulate in suspension.

S: The rich chocolate aroma is quite impressive. An earthy hops aroma as well, but for the most part this smells like Christopher Elbow chocolate.

T: Milk chocolate, caramel, and earthy hops. A bit of a roasted coffee flavor lingers behind the chocolate. There is a sweetness that permeates that is too much for me, personally. Chocolate beers tend to be too sweet for my palate in general. The taste doesn't mask the ABV as much as other offerings in Boulevard's Smokestack Series.

M: Medium-bodied, nice malty creaminess. Not much drying of the mouth for the alcohol content. You taste the alcohol more than you feel it.

D: I really don't know if I'm going to be able to finish this 750. There was a huge amount of hype locally surrounding this limited edition ale. I can appreciate the superior craftsmanship that went into this beer, as evidenced by the appearance, smell, and mouthfeel. I simply do not enjoy the taste. Like I said, chocolate beers are too sweet for my palate. If you like chocolate beers, however, this is a must try. I'm glad I tried it, but my fears were confirmed. I just can't appreciate chocolate as the main event in a beer.

UPDATE: Yep, I finished the 750.

Serving type: bottle

02-19-2011 04:11:51 | More by tito42
More User Reviews:
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jroberts8811

Missouri

3.5/5  rDev -6.2%

04-17-2014 01:38:01 | More by jroberts8811
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Immortale25

North Carolina

3.75/5  rDev +0.5%

04-17-2014 01:19:09 | More by Immortale25
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teromous

Virginia

2.63/5  rDev -29.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

A: It's an interesting beer right off the bat. The body of the beer is a very hazy orange light brown color, with a fairly light eggshell white head.It has an enormous amount of carbonation, and I want to emphasize the importance of a careful pour with this one. The head is ridiculously huge. I had a bit of a gusher, but I eventually got it settled down. Aside from the foam fountain, the beer really is fantastic looking!

S: I get some spice on the nose. It's a bit hard to place, it is just very spicy. It's a bit of a conundrum, because the beer smells quite wonderful but I get absolutely no smell of chocolate! The beer says "Chocolate Ale" which leads me to believe there is chocolate in this. I get zero chocolate aroma. I suppose I will just go on to describe this wonderful spicy aroma. It's slightly peppery, and smells a bit like crushed salad greens. I am rating this beer as outstanding because it is quite wonderful, but I want to make a public declaration that this smells nothing of chocolate. As the beer warms up, the scent of alcohol begins to voyeur. This beer is leading a double life. It is quite good smelling but for all the wrong reasons! I feel that perhaps I have received a beer that was mislabeled or bottled incorrectly? In the grand scheme of things it still smells outstanding...just no chocolate...

T: Very uneventful in the taste department. I get some alcohol and a tad of caramel. Where is this mythological chocolate that the label claims?! For shame!

M: Admittedly it is hard to focus on something as simple as the mouthfeel when I am cheated at taste. It's fine. I'll rate it "okay" because I am quick to move on with this beer. Adjust your expectations accordingly.

O: No chocolate. That should be enough to deter any drinker with the literary aptitude to read a bottle. I can't say in good conscience that it is a horrible beer, but it is quite poor. I feel that my expectations have been ransacked; that I've been bamboozled! How could a beer boast the proclamation of chocolate and stand with nothing to offer? For those who live in the world of summation and "buzz-words," where is the chocolate???

Serving type: bottle

04-17-2014 00:08:06 | More by teromous
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Georgia

3.75/5  rDev +0.5%

04-16-2014 12:04:22 | More by sendbeer
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04-15-2014 02:11:27 | More by psdonnelly
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Kansas

3.75/5  rDev +0.5%

04-14-2014 03:02:04 | More by FreeKansas
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Chucker17

South Dakota

3.75/5  rDev +0.5%

04-13-2014 15:01:47 | More by Chucker17
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Washington

3.5/5  rDev -6.2%

04-12-2014 18:55:09 | More by cherche
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cjgiant

District of Columbia

3.5/5  rDev -6.2%

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3.25/5  rDev -12.9%

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4/5  rDev +7.2%

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Colorado

4.25/5  rDev +13.9%

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jaycar06

New Hampshire

3.75/5  rDev +0.5%

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daryk77

District of Columbia

4.5/5  rDev +20.6%

04-03-2014 15:03:19 | More by daryk77
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spham

Texas

4.25/5  rDev +13.9%

04-02-2014 19:44:04 | More by spham
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Thanx4AllDaFish

Texas

2.5/5  rDev -33%

04-02-2014 14:54:10 | More by Thanx4AllDaFish
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kristougher

North Carolina

3/5  rDev -19.6%

04-01-2014 20:54:49 | More by kristougher
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kojevergas

Texas

3.4/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

750ml brown glass bottle with attractively understated label and branded red hood-and-silver-wire cap over a branded cork acquired at a local TX bottle shop many weeks ago and served into an Avery stem-tulip in me gaff in low altitude Austin, Texas. Reviewed live. Expectations are high given the brewery - which makes some beers I really adore. 9.10% ABV per the label. "Batch Number/Best by Date: CH13354-1 09-2014." Cost was $10.99 USD. Reviewed as a flavored ale.

Served chilled and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: No bubble show forms as it's poured.

Pours a two finger wide head of white-khaki colour. Nice creaminess and thickness. Has a nice soft complexion and an even albeit slightly thin consistency. Inconsistent spotty lacing clings to the sides of the glass as the head recedes. Head retention is rather good for the high ABV - about 5-6 minutes.

Body colour is a translucent transparent gold of good vibrance and excellent clarity. Quite clean; no floating yeast particles or hop sediment are/is visible. Appears well-carbonated.

Overall, it's looking pretty good, but admittedly isn't quite what I expected given it's a chocolate ale. I'm looking forward to the first sip.

Sm: Caramel, nutty notes, brown malts, and malty sweetness. Chocolate? Sure, but it's not quite what you'd expect. This isn't the dark chocolate or milk chocolate character you'd find in a stout. It's more like a natural raw cacao character, and evokes crumbly dusty bricks of chocolate. Truffle too. Hazelnut. Cream.

No hop charactr, alcohol, or yeast character is detectable.

I admit, at first I was a bit put off. There's something vaguely artificial about it and the chocolate aromatics are pretty arresting if you're expecting a stout-like chocolate character. But I find myself coming around to it the more I take it in.

It's a very soft approachable aroma, and I find it inviting. A pleasant mellow aroma of mild strength.

T/Mf: It's got a comforting, soft texture to it. Supple and giving. Smooth and wet. Comforting and refreshing, even soothing. Well-carbonated. Has a medium body and an apt thickness. Nicely creamy.

Not oily, hot, gushed, boozy, astringent, or harsh.

The chocolate notes do evoke that crumbly dusty powdery feel of raw natural cacao. Brown malts fill out the body nicely. Caramel. Faint hazelnut. There is some vague fruitiness, but I lack the palate to place it. (Forgive me). I don't pick up on any yeasty character, hop character, or overt alcohol.

It's a well balanced flavour profile, and has a nice cohesion. Not quite gestalt. Nuanced, sure. I've never experienced this particular kind of of chocolate character in a beer (at least that I can remember). Not the most intricate or complex brew, but it boasts some nice subtlety. I do like it, but the one-two punch of brown malt and crumbly chocolate takes some adjusting to.

One could make the argument that it's a bit too sweet, but I find the sweetness to be kind of apt.

Above average depth of flavour. Average duration and intensity of flavour.

Dr: Drinkable and enjoyable. Hides its ABV nicely. I'll finish the bottle with relative ease, though I doubt I'd want more than one bottle in the same night. It's not Boulevard's finest work, but it's a near-unique brew with a lot of interesting atypical chocolate character to offer. Whether or not you like it, I think it's worth trying just to see one shade of what chocolate can be. I'm not sure I really like it, to be honest, but it does give me pause. It's certainly not what one imagines when they think of a chocolate ale, but boy is it interesting.

B-

Serving type: bottle

03-30-2014 08:15:09 | More by kojevergas
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thegerm87

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3.25/5  rDev -12.9%

03-30-2014 01:48:35 | More by thegerm87
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3.75/5  rDev +0.5%

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4/5  rDev +7.2%

03-28-2014 13:07:17 | More by mancallede
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Chocolate Ale from Boulevard Brewing Co.
84 out of 100 based on 617 ratings.